Was Sebastian Vettel Ousted From Ferrari Because of Charles Leclerc? Mattia Binotto Responds

Published 06/03/2021, 4:22 AM EDT
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari and Charles Leclerc of Monaco and Ferrari talk after practice for the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)


When it was announced last year that Sebastian Vettel was leaving Ferrari, many were left shocked. Some believed that the German was parting ways with the team because of tension with his teammate, Charles Leclerc. However, the team principal of the Italian team, Mattia Binotto feels that wasn’t the case at all.

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Things went sour for the two of them in the 2019 season. Leclerc managed to beat Vettel by coming fourth in the driver’s standings, and adding to their problems was the pair’s crash in Brazil. This ruined their partnership till the point of no return.

Now with the four-time champion at Aston Martin and Carlos Sainz replacing him at the Scuderia, Binotto can finally reveal why Ferrari and Vettel went their separate ways for the new season.

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Sebastian Vettel had no hostility from Leclerc, says Binotto

Speaking to RaceFans, the team boss said, “No, no, no – what happened in 2019 was not the reason. When we had the lockdown at the start of last year it was the time for us to decide [on our future driver line-up].”

SPA, BELGIUM – Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari, Ferrari Team Principal Mattia Binotto and Charles Leclerc of Monaco and Ferrari stand for a minutes silence in tribute to the late Formula 2 driver Anthoine Hubert on the Formula 3 grid before the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Spa, Belgium. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“It was even more important to decide very soon simply out of full respect to ourselves, and to Sebastian to give him the opportunity to find another seat. The fact that today he’s driving for Aston Martin, I’m very happy with that,” Binotto concluded.

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How’s the German doing in his new chapter at Aston Martin?

Vettel has joined the Silverstone-based team for the 2021 season. However, things got off to a rough start for the German as he struggled to get used to the car and earn points for his team in the championship.

His first signs of improvement came at the Monaco Grand Prix, where he qualified eighth and finished fifth place, earning ten points – his first of the season.

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Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

Now, Vettel prepares himself for the sixth round of the championship, which is set to take place in the streets of Baku. He hopes to achieve a similar result.

Has Seb really found his form again? Or was Monaco a one-off event? We will just have to wait for the weekend to find out.

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Arpit Gomes

497 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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